FDAI Specification – Revised

A while back, I posted some recommended specification language regarding the annual inspection of fire and egress door assemblies, and I have since revised it based on everyone's comments.  The original language and comments are still here, and the updated language is below.  This should be inserted into the hardware specification for projects designed to comply with the 2009 edition of the IBC, or in jurisdictions which require compliance with NFPA 80-2007 or 2010.  Feel free to comment if you have suggestions for improvements.

By |2012-01-27T22:07:30-05:00August 11th, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors|2 Comments

FDAI Speed Dating

Tonight I attended the local DHI chapter meeting, where I was one of the presenters in a "cracker barrel" style presentation on fire door assembly inspection.  It was kind of like FDAI speed dating.  We had 6 tables, each with a different topic and 1 or 2 presenters per table, and the attendees cycled through all of the tables to hear a 10-minute presentation on each topic.

By |2012-01-27T22:07:33-05:00May 13th, 2010|FDAI, Means of Egress|2 Comments

Don’t Get Burned

On Thursday, May 13th, the New England Chapter of the Door & Hardware Institute will be holding our meeting at a new location - Vinny T's in Dedham, Massachusetts.  The meeting topic is fire door assembly inspection (FDAI), and many of the local fire door inspectors will be participating in the presentations.  The format is "cracker-barrel" style, where there are 5 or 6 short (10-minute) presentations about various sub-topics, with time for Q&A.

By |2017-03-09T08:56:39-05:00April 25th, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors|3 Comments

Rosepark Care Home

A while back, I wrote a post about the requirement for fire doors to be self-closing, and I referenced a fire at the Rosepark Care Home in Uddington, Scotland.  The fire occurred in 2004, but the results of the investigation are being reported now.  I've been collecting news articles related to fire and egress doors on www.firedoorguide.com, and there are several articles there about the Rosepark fire.

By |2019-09-25T10:22:13-04:00April 15th, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors|0 Comments

Parkside West Fire

Last Tuesday night, approximately fifty people were left homeless by a fire at the Parkside West Apartments in New London, Connecticut, which apparently began on a stove in a 3rd-story apartment.  One of the newspaper accounts of the fire investigation reported that the fire marshal stated "in the third-floor apartment where the fire is believed to have started, a weatherstrip prevented the door from closing, allowing smoke to spread."

By |2013-02-08T21:40:33-05:00March 13th, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors, Videos|1 Comment

Survey SAYS…

A couple of weeks ago I posted a survey to find out what people know about fire doors.  The purpose was to test my theory that the reason fire doors are improperly modified and damaged hardware is left unrepaired is because people don't realize a) which doors are fire doors or b) what can or can't be done to a fire door.  I originally developed this theory while I was creating a presentation about fire door inspection, and I wanted to have data to support it.

By |2012-01-27T22:08:04-05:00January 22nd, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors|1 Comment

Fire Door Survey

In 2007, the annual inspection of fire door assemblies became a code requirement that is gradually being adopted across the U.S. Given the enormous quantity of fire doors and the relatively small number of qualified fire door inspectors, implementation of this change has been challenging, but because of the appalling condition of the fire doors I see daily, I am determined to increase awareness of this requirement and use it to improve the safety of buildings.

By |2016-11-14T11:32:57-05:00January 9th, 2010|FDAI, Fire Doors|3 Comments

Interesting Place for an ASA Strike

I have heard from some code officials that annual fire door assembly inspections aren't feasible because there are too many fire doors, or aren't necessary because the building inspectors and fire marshals already have it covered.  The application below caught my eye on the way into my hotel the other other night.  It's the fire door that separates the wing my room is in from the lobby and the other three wings. The door is in rough shape, most likely because the panic device has been replaced several times and there's nothing left in the door to attach it to.  Someone decided that an ASA strike is just the ticket...they used it kind of like a giant washer.  Not to mention that the replacement panic is not fire exit hardware and is equipped with dogging which allows the latch to be held retracted.

By |2012-01-27T22:08:05-05:00December 30th, 2009|FDAI, Funky Applications|1 Comment

Hinge Fillers

What you're looking at is an existing fire rated frame with a new door that I saw recently during a fire door inspection.  Most of the other doors that I inspected that day had steel hinge fillers to fill the existing hinge preps before the continuous hinges were installed.  So why were a half-dozen or so filled with expandable foam insulation?  Hmm...it's a mystery.

By |2012-01-27T22:10:38-05:00May 1st, 2009|FDAI, Fire Doors, Hinges & Pivots|0 Comments


I recently conducted a fire door assembly inspection and I noted that many of the existing frames had old holes that had been patched with Bondo filler putty.  NFPA 80 requires that holes left by the removal of hardware must be filled with steel fasteners or with the same material as the door or frame.  To the best of my knowledge, there isn't a filler putty-type product that has been tested for this use.  If anyone knows of a putty that is acceptable for use on fire-rated doors and frames, I'd love to hear about it.

By |2012-01-27T22:10:40-05:00March 19th, 2009|FDAI, Fire Doors|4 Comments

Door Gap Gauge

The instructors in my Fire Door Assembly Inspector (FDAI) class showed us a really handy gauge to measure clearances around fire rated doors, and since I'm going to do my first *official* inspection tomorrow I tracked one down.  It can easily and accurately measure 1/16", 1/8", 3/16", 1/4", and 3/8" gaps, and a 3/4" undercut.  For only $18.95, you can be the proud owner of your own Door Gap Gauge by shopping online at doorgapgauge.com.

By |2017-08-24T08:57:24-04:00February 23rd, 2009|FDAI, Fire Doors|2 Comments
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